This is something I often get asked and without a detailed knowledge of the Salesforce platform, it can be a difficult thing to work out.
This article provides some great examples of when you need to get a developer involved to make changes to your Salesforce and when you don't.
No custom Salesforce code required
- Blocking bad data.
- Integrating with AppExchange applications.
- Using buttons for URL hacking.
- Updating and creating records automatically.
- Building wizards and multipage prompts through flows.
Custom Salesforce code required -- for now
- Complex record updates.
- Branded experiences.
- Web to case.
- Force.com applications.
- Non-AppExchange integration.
Over the years, Salesforce has introduced greater functionality that requires minimal technical knowledge and is possible for an admin to roll out rather than requiring a developer.